CARS.COM — Despite a succession of mild refreshes to the current-generation BMW 3 Series, the poster-boy luxury sedan continues to lose ground to rivals such as the Audi A4 and Mercedes-Benz C-Class, while facing stiff competition from newcomers such as the Alfa Romeo Giulia. That’s not gonna do the 330i any favors in Cars.com’s upcoming 2017 Luxury Sedan Challenge, apart from maybe casting it as the venerable underdog.
Related: 2017 BMW 3 Series: What’s Changed
Updates for 2017 are mainly limited to under the hood, with a new 2.0-liter four-cylinder that bumps up the horsepower of the outgoing engine to 248, with power channeled to the rear wheels through a six-speed manual or eight-speed automatic transmission. Our tester for the Challenge came equipped with the latter transmission.
The Alpine White sedan with a Saddle Brown Dakota Leather interior totaled $47,345, including a $995 destination charge. That sum included exterior features such as a moonroof, 18-inch aluminum-alloy wheels, matte chrome trim and LED headlights and foglights. Cabin appointments included a leather-wrapped sport steering wheel, Fineline Anthracite wood trim, sport seats (10-way powered and heated in the front with lumbar support), ambient lighting, an anthracite headliner, a backup camera and BMW’s iDrive system with a 6.5-inch display.
How will the 330i fare in our Luxury Sedan Challenge? Be sure to check back in July to find out.